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What is dslr live view

How to Use Your Camera's Live View (Camera Modes)

Your camera’s live view mode is a great way to take photos with more control and accuracy. With it, you can see what the photo will look like before you take it, which can help you get better results.

To use live view mode, simply switch to it from the regular viewing mode. The camera will then show a preview of the photo that will be taken. You can zoom in and out, adjust the focus, and change other settings to get the perfect shot.

Live view mode is especially useful for taking photos of small objects or details, since you can get a closer view and make sure everything is in focus. Give it a try next time you’re shooting something up close!

What Is Live View?

Live View is a function that is available on most DSLR cameras these days.

Technically speaking, the Live View function lifts the mirror out of the way and opens the shutter. Light can then pass through to the sensor and be displayed on the camera’s LCD screen in real-time.

Liew View gives you a preview of how your image will look by displaying it on the LCD screen before you’ve pressed the shutter. This allows you to make various adjustments to your image throughout the shooting process.

It can make your workflow more efficient. You won’t have to take a picture to preview it after every adjustment.

When Should I Use Live View?

Live View mode is great, but it’s not perfect in every single situation. It’s most useful when you want to work on your composition. This means it’s perfect for still life photography.

Food and product photographers, for example, use Live View a lot. It’s incredibly helpful to be able to move various elements around on your set and seeing how it influences the composition.

With still life photography, everything has to be perfectly placed, or it becomes noticeable. Even a fraction of an inch can often impact the final result. This is where Live View comes in handy.

However, Live View is also beneficial in other situations. You can use it to find the best composition in Landscape photography and produce macro images that are tack sharp.

What Are the Advantages of Using Live View?


One of the biggest learning curves in photography is getting your exposure right.

Your LCD screen doesn’t always give you total accuracy in displaying your exposure. To know if your image is correctly exposed, you need to know how to read a histogram.

The histogram is a graph that graphically maps out the tones in your image mathematically. It shows you where the tones fall and if you’re blowing out your highlights or clipping your shadows. For a properly exposed image, both your highlights and shadows need to fall within an acceptable range.

You can view your histogram while in Live View, as well as your EXIF data and composition grids. This will help you make adjustments as you shoot.

Even if your image looks bright on the back of your LCD screen, your histogram will tell you if your camera settings are actually correct.

Sharper Images

Live View will help you take sharper images.

One of the problems with automatic focusing is that the area of the scene where you want to focus may not fall near one of your focus points. Cheaper cameras don’t have as many focus points as more expensive models.

If your subject is not close to a focus point, you might not get a sharp enough image even if you’re focusing and recomposing

You can see if your image is sharp by enabling Live View and using the Zoom function. You can switch to Manual Focus and get a tack sharp image by using Live View and Zoom together.

Live View can offer 5X to 10X times magnification, which is also really useful for macro shots. By using Live View and Zoom, you can get sharp images of small subjects like insects, and with the desired depth-of-field.

Depth-of-Field Preview

When you press your shutter button, you don’t always know how your depth-of-field is going to look in your picture.

Some cameras have a depth-of-field preview button that will allow you to see what your image will look like by stopping down to the aperture you’ve set.

But you can also do this with Live View.

When you focus on your subject in Live View, it gives you the ability to see the depth-of-field more accurately than you would by looking through the optical viewfinder. This is incredibly useful in macro photography when the depth-of-field can be very thin.

Using Live View can help you make sure your depth-of-field is not too shallow and looks like you want it to.

On some cameras with a touch screen, you can tap on the screen to focus your image like you can on a mobile phone. This feature makes Live View extra useful.

Live View is useful for previewing depth-of-field in macro photography

Grid View and Level View

While Live View is activated, you have the option to use Live View or Level View.

Grid View is available on most (if not all) camera models. It divides your screen into nine equal sections, like a tic-tac-toe board. This allows you to compose your scene using the principle of Rule-of-Thirds. In this guiding principle, images are stronger when the focal point, or main area of interest, falls where these nine lines intersect.

Level View is also referred to as Spirit View, and it’s not available on all cameras. It acts as a spirit level and shows you if your image is straight.

Grid View and Level View are particularly useful in some genres of photography, like product or landscape photography.

What Are the Disadvantages of Using Live View?

There are not a lot of disadvantages to using Live View with your camera, but there are a couple. DSLR’s come with tons of functions and settings these days, but not every single one is going be to be useful in every situation — no one function is perfect.


One of the main disadvantages of using Live View depends on the camera you have. On cheaper models, Live View might not display your scene optimally. The LCD screen quality is not high enough. There can be a lot of noise on the screen that will distract you from what you’re seeing.

Live View is a function that needs light to work. This means that it works as long as you have enough light hitting a sensor. As soon as you start losing light due to the time of day, it gets harder to see what’s on your screen. When you don’t have enough light, Live View becomes almost useless.

Moving Objects

The biggest advantages to using Live View are the ability to tweak your exposure and fine-tune your focus and depth-of-field.

In scenarios where you have moving objects, this is not useful. Scenes that include moving cars or people or sports photography are some examples.

Live View Drains the Battery

Another negative consequence is that Live View eats up the power of your battery very quickly. This means that you have to have several extra batteries on hand.

If you find that you enjoy Live View and use it a lot, don’t forget to have a surplus of rechargeable batteries ready. And turn your camera off when you’re not using it. This little habit will go a long way in preserving the life of your battery.

Common Live View Questions

What Is the Live View on a Camera?

Live View is a function on many DSLR cameras that allows you to see what your image will look like in real-time by displaying a preview on the back of your LCD screen.

What Is Live View on a Canon Camera?

Liew View can be accessed through a button located on the back or top of the camera, or through the menu on most Canon models. This mode can help you by displaying a preview of what your image on your LCD screen.

How Do I Use Live View?

Every camera manufacturer sets up its various modes differently. Live view can usually be accessed through the menu, or via a button on the back or top of the camera itself.

How Do I Turn on My Canon Live View?

Check the instruction manual for your specific DSLR camera to find the location of the Live View function. Most Canon cameras have a Live View button somewhere on the camera body to help you access it quickly, rather than necessitating that you shuffle through the menu.


A lot of photographers forego the Live View mode on their cameras because they’re just used to using the optical viewfinder.

However, the Live View function can be handy in a lot of situations. If you’ve been struggling to get your exposure right or to compose a scene to make it look like you want it, try this useful function on your DSLR. You might find that it helps you quickly improve your photography. It just might become your best friend.

What Is Live View and Why Should You Use it on Your DSLR?

If you’re feeling confused by the live view function on your camera, don’t worry; the process of using it couldn’t be more straightforward. Over the decades, photographers have traditionally scoped a scene by looking through their camera’s optical viewfinder. In the film days, that was the only way to frame your photo, but with the development of the DSLR, and later the mirrorless camera, pretty much all systems today give you the option of using live view mode (this is, in fact, the only mode on mirrorless cameras).


  • Why use live view?
  • Why use the viewfinder?

In basic terms, live view takes what your camera sees straight from its imaging sensor and displaying it on the LCD screen. On a DSLR, this means locking the mirror up and the shutter open so that the sensor is always exposed to light, bypassing the optical viewfinder entirely. There are several advantages — and some disadvantages — to shooting in this mode. Here’s how to make the most of it.

Why use live view?

The first benefit of using live view is that, compared to the viewfinder, you get a much larger picture of what your camera can see. Those who practice genres such as landscape photography will particularly benefit from this. Why? Well, in a genre where there’s little room for error, having the larger screen gives you a more detailed perspective. This helps you to get perfect exposures, composition, and focus.

Autofocus is also more accurate when using live view mode, because focus is happening directly on the imaging sensor itself, rather than a separate autofocus sensor. Additionally, you can focus on things much closer to the edges of the frame compared to a DSLR’s viewfinder AF system. On the latest cameras, this can also allow for object-recognition focusing like face or eye-detection. While the accuracy goes up, focus speed can go down. Nikon DSLRs resort to slower contrast-detection autofocus in live view, while Canon DSLRs use faster phase-detection autofocus in combination with contrast detection and suffer much less of a speed penalty as a result.

Live view also makes it much easier to focus manually, thanks to the larger screen. Some cameras even have an option for “focus peaking,” which is a feature that highlights the areas of most contrast so you can visually see where the focus is sharpest. This is useful for everything from landscapes to still life shots to posed portraits. For the best results, we advise using a tripod, which will allow you to take a step back and not worry about keeping your camera stable.

You can also preview depth of field in real time, something anyone who loves creamy background bokeh will be pleased to know. Combined with the improved focusing accuracy, this means better results at wide apertures with shallow depth of field.

Another benefit of shooting in live view is the histogram display. If your image is going to be too dark or too bright, your histogram will reflect this right away, without you having to squint at the highlights and wonder if they’re blown out or not. Being able to see an immediate reading of your histogram helps you to identify if you need to make any changes to the exposure, speeding up your creating flow and saving you time later in editing. This is a much quicker process than continuously taking shots and reviewing them.

While most new and high-end cameras have the option of seeing a composition grid through the viewfinder, older and some entry-level cameras don’t. However, almost all cameras with live view mode will allow you to see a composition grid when using this function. So if you want to use the rule of thirds, for example, you can correctly place your subject on the right or left vertical line of the grid without having to guess where they should be.

Why use the viewfinder?

In addition to slower autofocus, live view mode on DSLRs tends to have longer shutter blackout times and slower burst rates.  Those who need to move at a fast pace — photojournalists and street photographers, for example — won’t be able to work as effectively if shooting in live view.

The other major drawback is significantly reduced battery life. An optical viewfinder uses almost no energy at all, and DSLRs can often take thousands of photos on a single battery charge. In live view, however, you may only get a few hundred, as continuously powering the sensor and screen takes a lot of juice.

But photographers who can be more methodical in their approach and don’t need to shoot a thousand photos at a time should notice that they pay more attention to detail and see an overall improvement in their photography by using live view. It’s not for every situation, but where appropriate, it’s a powerful tool and a real advantage of modern DSLRs over their film-era counterparts.

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Basics. Auto focus: Live View: nikonofficial - LiveJournal

Live View mode is widely used in digital SLR cameras, it is used not only for taking photos, but also for recording videos. Convenient, and sometimes simply necessary in everyday life, has a number of interesting parameters.

Contrast focusing mode, also known as Live View, is slower than its phase brother, but despite this, it has become widespread in digital SLR cameras. nine0003

Live View support breathes new life into DSLR cameras.

To switch to Live View mode, just press the corresponding button on the body, after which the camera mirror will rise and the LCD screen will display the image received by the matrix from the lens, and at the same time the settings.

You can always zoom in to ensure accurate focusing, which is very convenient. Unlike traditional shooting, in this case, the camera sensor is constantly working, which leads to an increase in
temperature. If there are 30 seconds or less left before Live View is automatically turned off, a corresponding informational message will appear on the screen.

You can take both photos and videos in Live View. It is enough to change the position of the selector.

Nikon's current DSLRs support two Live View focus modes, including the familiar AF-S (single-servo) for shooting static subjects. In this mode, focus is locked when the shutter button is pressed halfway. But the newly minted AF-F is designed for shooting moving objects. In both cases, it is recommended to use AF-S lenses, i.e. models with a built-in motor, for best results. nine0003

In the camera settings you will find different AF area modes. The wide area AF is more suitable for landscape and architectural photography, where the photographer chooses the focus point. The normal AF area is oriented for shooting with a tripod. It uses a slower but more accurate focusing method. As before, the photographer is free to set the focus point himself.

The Object Tracking mode is optimal for working with moving objects. Before the camera starts tracking the subject, you need to set the focus to the desired point. nine0003

Face-priority AF was developed for shooting people. The camera will automatically determine the location of the face in the frame, after which the selected area will be highlighted with a double yellow border. If there are multiple people in the scene, priority is given to the person closest to the camera lens. If necessary, you can change this by choosing an alternative focus point yourself.

AF-ON is responsible for focusing on the selected point. A handy alternative to the shutter button, especially when shooting video, but not found in all cameras. nine0009

Nobody canceled manual focus, it is often used for shooting video. Some lens manufacturers produce special optics for video applications. In them, the focus ring has much more travel compared to conventional models, which ensures greater accuracy and smoothness.

One thing to keep in mind when working with Live View is that there is always a moment of delay between what is happening in front of the lens and what you see on the camera screen. It is this property of contrast autofocus that prevents it from effectively tracking fast-moving subjects, as the moment can be missed due to the delay. However, Live View can help out in many situations, for example, when in a crowded place it is not possible to focus through the viewfinder or you need to take an unexpected shot. This mode is often used for static shooting of architecture or objects in a studio, as it allows you to compose the shot and check the accuracy of the focus by zooming in on the image. A more exotic use case is underwater photography. Of course, you will have to get a waterproof case, but keep in mind that you won’t see much through the mask and viewfinder, in this case the LCD screen is much more informative. nine0003


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"SLRs" with the simplicity and convenience of a "compact" | PC World

Digital SLR cameras with Live View (LCD view), supporting numerous automatic shooting modes and other consumer-friendly features, are now becoming almost as easy to use as compact cameras aimed at the inexperienced user. nine0003

And their prices continue to fall. In our test center, we tested a number of the best representatives of the new generation of SLR cameras, as well as several older models.

The stereotype that DSLRs are overly complicated is irreversibly a thing of the past. As well as the myth that these devices lack some of the handy features supported by compact cameras. Of course, one can hardly expect that digital SLR cameras will replace pocket cameras in the near future, but gradually more and more users are starting to think about purchasing a “DSLR”. nine0003

After testing ten of the latest DSLRs, we've come to the conclusion that you're getting a lot more for your money these days than ever before. And we are talking not only about the notorious megapixels, although their number continues to grow. Today's digital cameras boast both support for technologies found in professional models and an increase in the number of features previously found only in compact cameras.

In general, more expensive cameras have a number of additional advantages, including faster shooting speeds for capturing action scenes, and higher sensitivity with less noise, for good quality shots taken in low light or even at night. Model Nikon D90 for $1,350, voted Best Buy by our editors, was the first DSLR capable of shooting 720p video. Of course, it is not yet able to compete with consumer camcorders, but we believe that in the future this direction will actively develop (the Canon 5D Mark II full-frame camera allows you to shoot video in 1080p format).

Auto shooting modes, face detection and Live View are already ubiquitous. Of the devices in this review, only the $650 Nikon D60 lacks Live View. It is worth noting that some manufacturers have better implementation of this mode than others. Sony, in particular, has integrated a second image sensor into its $750 DSLR-A300K for faster aiming and more accurate shooting. Developers Nikon and Canon in Live View use D9 in their cameras0 and EOS 50D automatic focusing of two types at once: based on focus sensors (typical for SLR cameras) and using image contrast analysis.

Only one camera (the $2,100 Olympus E3 model) does not have automatic modes that focus on shooting under certain conditions (story programs). And if in our last year's review the face recognition function was supported by only one model, then in the current one it is already present in the D9 device0 and three of the four Canon models (except for the EOS 40D).

Another trend is related to the integration of image stabilization mechanisms into SLR cameras. While some manufacturers, notably Canon and Nikon, build stabilization mechanisms into the lens, others prefer to place them inside the body. This path was chosen by the designers of Pentax, Olympus and Sony.

A built-in mechanism for cleaning the matrix from dust has become widespread. Of course, such a function does not completely eliminate the need for periodic cleaning, but it allows them to cope with annoying dust settling and the appearance of image defects associated with it. nine0003

The latest DSLRs have proven that you don't have to spend a lot of money to get great photos. The entry-level Canon EOS 450D, which costs just $850, scored well in our testing. The same can be said for the EOS 50D, which has a higher resolution than its predecessor, the EOS 40D. The Pentax K20D, which has unique shooting features and good performance, closes the list of cameras we tested. nine0003

Our ranking did not include the Panasonic Lumix DMC-G1 (sold for $800 with a lens that ranges from 28mm to 90mm). It does not belong to the class of traditional SLR cameras, but can be used with interchangeable lenses.

Nikon D90

The Nikon D90 DSLR is the first of its kind to feature movie shooting. And although this feature needs improvement, as a photographer's tool, the D90 earned the highest marks.

The D90 features a 12.3-megapixel sensor and a superb 3-inch Live View LCD screen. It has a face detection function and built-in retouching capabilities. For $1,350, buyers get an 18-105mm AF-S ED lens with it.

The model is well designed and does not seem unnecessarily bulky. It lies well in the hand, the purpose of all elements is intuitive. The rich and easy-to-manage system menu includes several very convenient elements, which include, in particular, the My Menu function, which allows you to save frequently used settings. nine0003

A button on the back activates Live View mode, which provides the ability to both take still frames and shoot video in 720p at 24 fps. When we took photos, the Live View function felt a little heavy and the auto focus was too slow, so we preferred to use the viewfinder.

Before you start shooting a movie, you need to achieve autofocus using the Live View function. Shooting in progress D90 automatically adjusts exposure, but not focus. You can, of course, adjust the focus manually, but without a tripod it seemed inconvenient. In the lower part of the frame, unwanted “rolling” (creating the impression of judder) is noticeable due to the characteristics of the image recording by the CMOS sensor. The quality of the sound recorded through the microphone also left much to be desired. Also, you cannot use the microphone to create audio for photos.

In general, according to the test results, PC World Test Center experts spoke about the D9 model0 in the most flattering way, and she pushed the Canon 50D into second place. I would like to note the fast and, as a rule, accurate operation of the autofocus mechanism, as well as the good implementation of the autoflash function. The D90 tries to soften the brightness of the backlight, and we hardly noticed any ghosting on the contrasting edges. When shooting in the dark at sensitivities above ISO 400, noise is present in photos, but it is minimal and more like film grain.

Canon EOS 50D

Among existing DSLRs, the Canon EOS 50D ($1,800 with EF IS USM 18-200mm, f/3.5-5.6 lens; $1,200 without lens) stands out with its 15.1 million sensitive elements. The quality of the received image according to the results of tests conducted in the laboratory of the PC World Test Center, was awarded the mark "excellent". Photos are vibrant and color accurate, both when shot with flash and in natural light. However, in our tests at different sensitivity values, the 50D behaved in fact the same way as the 40D. When shooting at ISO 3200, the jury found the results unsatisfactory, and at ISO 1600 they were quite acceptable. nine0003

The 50D is Canon's first DSLR with face detection (both viewfinder and live view). Autofocus works quickly and confidently. In continuous mode, the camera can shoot at 6.3 fps in a series of up to 90 frames in JPEG format (model 40D - up to 75 shots). The 3-inch LCD screen has a resolution of 920K dots, which is noticeably higher than that of the 40D. We were somewhat disappointed with the Live View mode. Nevertheless, thanks to a special button, using this function is quite convenient. Autofocus supports both methods: contrast detection and phase detection. Unfortunately, during the tests, the camera did not want to focus at the right moment. nine0003

Although the menu has more graphic elements, it generally follows the operating concept used in other Canon models. The only thing to complain about is that changing focus points is done in two steps and often requires the use of a viewfinder.

As for the viewfinder, its coverage area does not quite correspond to the image that the matrix forms. Therefore, sometimes the pictures have to be taken again. When relying solely on the viewfinder, athletes' fingers and toes don't always get into the frame at first. But over time, we got used to the features of the viewfinder and began to photograph taking into account its wider coverage area. nine0003

Canon EOS 450D

Canon EOS 450D with 12.2MP sensor and IS 18-55mm, (f/3.5-5.6) lens with image stabilization can be purchased for $850. With crop factor, lens focal length is 29-88mm . In high-speed shooting mode, the camera is capable of shooting up to 3.5 fps.

At the back of the camera is a large 3-inch screen, though not high resolution. In Live View mode, the sensor is used both for previewing the image and for shooting, so the photo will be the same as what you see on the screen during the hover process. This approach has its advantages, but at the same time, the Live View function of Canon models is slower than the Sony Alpha DSLR-A300K. nine0003

Among the features include the A-Dep mode, which adjusts the depth of field, so that all objects in the picture are in focus. Experienced photographers will love the spot metering and highlight-priority features. The latter allows you to increase detail in the bright areas of the frame, although you will have to give up ISO 100 sensitivity. When shooting at high sensitivity, the noise reduction mode will help.

During testing, the images taken with the XSi were sharp and well exposed. There was practically no noise in shadow areas, and interference at high-contrast transitions was minimal. nine0003

Canon EOS 40D

The image quality of the Canon EOS 40D (sold for $1,150 without a lens or $1,500 with a 28-135mm lens) was rated "very good" by the PC World Test Center. Images were balanced and color accurate in both flash and natural light.

Other features of this 10.1-megapixel camera include a 3-inch 230K-dot LCD screen with Live View and a Highlight Tone Priority function to enhance the level of detail in bright areas of the frame. Autofocus, using nine focus points, was fast and accurate. nine0003

Another highlight of the 40D is its multi-level dust protection system (also available on the 50D and 450D). The sensor self-cleaning procedure starts every time the camera is turned on. It is executed so quickly that the delay is not felt at all.

However, we noticed that in the picture the image area is larger than the area observed through the viewfinder. And in the program modes, it was not possible to change the sensitivity settings.

nine0070 Sony Alpha DSLR-A300K

The Sony Alpha DSLR-A300K, which has a 10.2-megapixel sensor (supplied with a lens with a focal length of 18-70 mm, is priced at $860), is equipped with a tilting LCD screen with Live View function. In this mode, an additional mirror and matrix are used to transmit the image, so there is no delay during pointing and shooting. Somewhat upset that the screen with a diagonal of 2. 7 inches deviates only in the vertical plane. One can imagine how complex the design of a screen that rotates in all planes, but we still hope that Sony engineers will be able to design it in the future. In continuous shooting mode, the camera can shoot at 3 fps (2 fps when using Live View). Macro mode has been improved, a built-in image stabilizer has appeared. nine0003

If the noise reduction mode is not enabled, then noise is quite noticeable, and noise is visible on high-contrast transitions. But even taking into account these shortcomings, according to the results of testing by PC World Test Center specialists, this model received a “very good” rating for image quality. Particularly noteworthy is the work of automation in the case of using a flash.

Beginners will probably appreciate the Exposure Shift feature. First, you set the desired mode, and then the automation helps you get the required exposure by setting various shutter speeds and apertures. nine0003

Olympus Evolt E-510

The $650 Olympus Evolt E-510, with a 10-megapixel sensor and a standard 14-42mm lens, is a solid tool with a flexible system of settings that allows you to get very good photos in most situations.

The rotary switch located on the top of the camera offers you to choose from 5 standard shooting modes. A further 13 modes, ranging from shooting fireworks to photographing documents and panoramic shots, are available through the menu, allowing you to adapt to special conditions. nine0003

In addition to exposure bracketing in this model, you can flexibly change the flash and white balance settings. In addition, you get two levels of image stabilization, a depth-of-field preview button, multiple metering options, and sensor vibration dust removal.

The Live View mode of the E-510 is very convenient, but its continuous use for a long time leads to overheating of the sensor and the appearance of noise in the image.

I did not like that the menu was not implemented very comfortably. Another disadvantage is the lack of a focus switch on Olympus lenses; changing the auto focus settings is carried out in the camera itself.

Color accuracy is commendable, and the E-510 handled most tasks fairly easily. At low sensitivity settings, the noise is almost invisible, at the turn of ISO 800 and above it is already clearly felt, but even here the Olympus camera shows results no worse than other cameras offered at a comparable price. nine0003

Olympus E3

The 10.1-megapixel E3 model is an attractive option for professionals and serious hobbyists. However, in a set with a lens whose focal length varies from 12 to 60 mm (24-120 mm with crop factor), the device costs $ 2,100 and weighs almost 1.5 kg.

But on the other hand, E3 has amazing speed and flexibility of settings. In tests, auto focus worked just instantly. In continuous mode, shooting is performed at a speed of up to 5 fps. The bright color LCD screen with Live View function folds out and rotates on hinges. nine0003

The dual rotary mode switch can be adjusted to suit your needs. For example, so that one wheel controls the shutter speed setting, and the other controls the aperture. The same applies to most of the other controls.

The E3 model offers advanced color balance controls, which is very pleasing, because in some situations the balance was still disturbed. Landscapes with vast areas of snow, water, and sky were underexposed and looked like they forgot to remove the dark blue filter. Exposure only slightly improved the situation. When shooting less bright objects, the results were much better - accurate colors, excellent detail, and only slight underexposure. nine0003

Canon EOS 1000D

The Canon EOS 1000D, with its many different settings and modes, allows you to take excellent quality photos. For $650, in addition to the camera itself, you get an 18-55mm (f/3.5-5.6) lens with image stabilization. Taking into account the crop factor, the focal length is 29–88 mm.

Separate buttons are placed, in our opinion, not very convenient. The 2.5-inch LCD screen is somewhat inferior to the 450D's 3-inch screen, but looks good enough. Weighing just 450g, the 1000D is Canon's lightest DSLR to date. nine0003

With a 10.1 million sensor and seven auto focus points, along with a host of other useful features, the XS looks very solid for an entry-level camera. In continuous mode, it provides shooting at a speed of 3 fps. This is not bad at all, considering that its older comrade 450D has a speed limit of 3.5 fps.

The 1000D supports Live View but lacks two important features found on the 450D. We are talking about spot metering and light tone priority mode. It is likely that beginners will not notice this, but more experienced users would certainly come in handy with such features. nine0003

In the viewfinder, which would be nice to have a larger size, autofocus indicators are displayed - when focus is locked, red dots light up.

Images are sharp and well exposed, with accurate color reproduction. True, there were still small traces of noise in the picture. The 1000D was also rated "very good" by the PC World Test Center, although slightly outperformed by the 450D.

Nikon D60

Selling for $650, the Nikon D60 features a 10.2 megapixel sensor, advanced in-line editing tools, and a bright 2.5-inch LCD screen. Also included is a Nikkor AF-S 18-55mm (f/3.5-5.6) zoom lens. Taking into account the crop factor, its focal length is 29–88 mm.

Navigation through the menu is carried out using a convenient button located to the right of the LCD display. Beginners (and even many experienced users) will certainly appreciate the hint system, which can be accessed by simply pressing a special button. The display produces a bright image that is clearly visible in any conditions, and the viewfinder has a comfortable size. nine0003

In our opinion, the camera lacks the functions of automatic exposure bracketing and white balance. There is also no Live View mode. An interesting feature of this model is animation support: if you select several pictures in JPEG format from the menu, the camera will independently compose them into a short video clip
. Standard features include continuous shooting (up to 3 fps), white balance adjustment, exposure compensation, macro photography, and black and white photography. nine0003

The lens allows you to take clear images, and the matrix makes little noise. The noise and dynamic range control functions are really useful. According to the PC World Test Center, the D60 model deserves good ratings, although they were lowered due to metering flaws.

Pentax K20D

Selling for $1,200 with a lens ranging from 18-55mm, the Pentax K20D will help former compact camera users take the next step forward. nine0003

The Pentax has a new CMOS sensor with 14.6 million sensors, as well as a sync connector for using an external flash. Although the Live View mode is not as pleasant as that of the Sony DSLR-A300K, the K20D's 2.7-inch LCD screen takes the image directly from the matrix and allows you to zoom in to check the focus.

Autofocus was a bit slow in our tests. And the flash lamp did not have enough power. However, on a bright sunny day, the pictures turned out very good. 3 fps in continuous shooting mode seems to be quite sufficient for an entry-level camera (unless, of course, you are going to shoot dynamic sports scenes). The K20D has several interesting and unique modes. The TAv mode, for example, is used to prioritize between shutter speed and aperture settings. Similar to manual setting, it allows you to select the desired aperture and shutter speed settings, but the camera will automatically set the sensitivity to achieve the correct exposure. nine0003

At sensitivities below ISO 400, images came out sharp and with good color reproduction. When the sensitivity was at ISO 800 or higher, there was noise. Overall, photo quality was rated "very good" by the PC World Test Center.

SLR alternative

For some, the main obstacle to purchasing a SLR camera is its size and weight. As an alternative, such people can be offered the Panasonic Lumix DMC-G1 model. It is smaller and lighter than any DSLR, and the feature set it supports makes compact camera users very comfortable. However, its price ($800) is quite comparable to the price of inexpensive SLR cameras, and during testing we were not able to get "true mirror" quality. nine0003

I say "true mirror" because the DMC-G1 is not in this class by design. There is no mirror and no mechanism for transmitting the image formed by the lens to the viewfinder through a system of prisms. Instead, a 3-inch widescreen LCD and electronic viewfinder are used.

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